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Who, or What's Your Impetus?




  1. the force that makes something happen or happen more quickly.
  • motivation, stimulus, incitement, incentive, inducement, inspiration, encouragement, boost, fillip, springboard

Impetus. Another word for motivation. Stimulus. Incitement. Inspiration. Encouragement. All these words convey the same meaning, yet have you ever stopped to ask yourself, "What's yours?"

What motivates you? What stimulates you? What or who inspires you? Who encourages you? Is it hearing your favourite pop song on the radio? What about the promise of financial gain? Is it your grandma with all her advice for and admiration of you? Is it seeing the kindness displayed by others as you people-watch during your lunch break? Is it hearing your significant other say, "I'm proud of you, babe." Is it imagining the misty-eyed smile of your dad as he watches you bring your dreams to life? Is it observing the determination and strength of the ant? Is it a sunrise? A sunset? Is it ever... YOU?

Yup. You. Are you ever your own motivation? Are you ever the reason that you go after what you've spent all these days and hours dreaming of? I dare say no, you aren't. But you should be.

Don't get me wrong, there is absolutely nothing wrong with seeking the stimulus for pursuing your heart's desires outside of you, but I think there is lots wrong with never seeking inspiration within you. How easy is it for us to be motivators for others? Most of the people I spend time with regularly find it so easy to cheer their peers on, make useful suggestions and offer constructive criticisms as appropriate, yet when asked to turn the focus back onto themselves, it's darn near impossible. It's a lot easier, it seems, for us to talk ourselves out of pursuing a passion, a goal, anything(!) than it is to take the wealth of information we possess about our own strengths and weaknesses, and use that information to motivate ourselves into action. No one knows you better than you know yourself, this includes your strengths and your weaknesses. No one sees your vision the way you see it. No one can visualize your dream in exactly the way you want it. Yet despite having all the information you need to just be motivated, it still doesn't happen.

It's been a year since I've written my last article. A year. That's like an eternity. Were there things I wanted to write about, share with you, express in this forum? Of course. But I wasn't motivated. I never brought up the fact that I hadn't written in forever to any of the persons close to me, so they didn't feel compelled to motivate me to get back to it. And, sadly, I didn't motivate myself. And that's just not good enough. So here I am, back at it. Finally. Because Lesley said, "Lesley, it's time to write again."

One more thing I've got to say about self-motivation. Motivate yourself to do something because it'll make you happy. Because it will somehow enhance your life and your well-being. Don't do it because you think it'll gain you favour with others, whether those "others" are the faceless people on social media, or your boss, or that cute guy/gal you're crushing on right now. Do it for you. You have to make you happy. Without your own motivation, while you're waiting on others to do it for you, you risk missing out on experiences that can offer you happiness in its rawest, most unadulterated form...the happiness that comes from within you, and is not dependent on external sources and therefore cannot be snatched just as frivolously as it was bestowed upon you.

Be your own motivation. Impetus. Stimulus. Inspiration. Encouragement. Cheering squad. You'll be happy you did. I'm proof.